John Charles Sturm Sr. was born on October 8, 1931, to Harold E. Sturm and Mary M. (Kelly) Sturm in Macomb, Ill. John graduated from Macomb Senior High School in 1949 and married his high school sweetheart, Rose M. Gray, in July 1950. From this union two daughters and a son were born. John was happy to rejoin Rose in heaven on August 21, 2018, surrounded by all their children.
From ages 16-27 John worked for Sam Barsi & Sons Inc. as a warehouse man, foreman, and eventually truck driver. John’s love of truck driving led him to opportunities with Burlington Truck Lines, Nuendorf Transportation, Keeshon Transport Systems, Murphy Motor Freight, and retirement at age 59 from Consolidated Freightways with a full Teamster Union pension. John was proud of his affiliation with the Teamsters and was a member of local unions 15, 325, and 364 where he served many years as shop steward, and retired from local 414.
After retirement John and Rose followed their dream of traveling together and owning their own business by opening J&R Concessions. Traveling together they sold pork tenderloin sandwiches, hot dogs, popcorn, soda, and their specialty onion rings from their own well-traveled mobile kitchen. This business took John and Rose to fairs and carnivals throughout Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio and eventually led them to actually retire in Lake Placid, Fla., where they stayed for about 10 years. While in Florida, together they took up the hobby of competitive weight lifting, earning many trophies and awards in their age group. In 2004 John and Rose moved to Winona to be near family and lived at Valley View Towers where they made many special and caring friends. Sadly, after 67 wonderful years of marriage, Rose passed away in December 2016 with John at her side.
John is survived by children, Mary K (Michael) Kirschmann of Winona, JoAnn (Gary) Porter of Pensacola, Fla., and John (Barbara) Sturm Jr. of Gloucester, Va.; grandchildren, Dr. John, Joseph, and Heather (Mary), Matthew and Lisa (JoAnn), Erin and Rose (John Jr.); and many great-grandchildren.
Following John’s wishes, there will be private family services. Hoff Celebration of Life Center, Goodview, is assisting the family with arrangements.